logo Calflora, a 501c3 non-profit
Taxon  Report  
Cryptantha flaccida  (Lehm.) Greene
Beaked cryptantha,   Flaccid cryptantha,   Weakstem cryptantha
Cryptantha flaccida is an annual herb that is native to California, and also found elsewhere in western North America.
Siskiyou Del Norte Modoc Humboldt Shasta Lassen Trinity Plumas Tehama Butte Mendocino Glenn Sierra Yuba Lake Nevada Colusa Placer Sutter El Dorado Yolo Alpine Napa Sonoma Sacramento Mono Amador Solano Calaveras Tuolumne San Joaquin Marin Contra Costa Alameda Santa Cruz Mariposa Madera San Francisco San Mateo Merced Fresno Stanislaus Santa Clara Inyo San Benito Tulare Kings Monterey San Bernardino San Luis Obispo Kern Santa Barbara Ventura Los Angeles Riverside Orange San Diego Imperial

Bloom Period
Genus: Cryptantha
Family: Boraginaceae  
Category: angiosperm  
PLANTS group:Dicot
Jepson eFlora section: eudicot

Ultramafic affinity: 1.6 - weak indicator

Habitat: slopes

Communities: Yellow Pine Forest, Foothill Woodland, Chaparral, Valley Grassland, many plant communities

Name Status:
Accepted by JEF + PLANTS

Alternate Names:
PLANTSCryptantha rostellata var. spithamea
iNatCryptantha sparsiflora
iNatCryptantha spithamaea
Information about  Cryptantha flaccida from other sources
Nursery availability from CNPLX
Commercial availability unknown.
Jepson eFlora


Photos on Calflora

Photos on CalPhotos

Google Images

Photos on iNaturalist

ID Tips on PlantID.net

[oregonflora.org] Description, Habitat: Plants 15 to 50 cm. Stems erect, slender, wiry, branched distally to throughout, branches ascending, pallid-strigose. Leaves only proximal-most pair occasionally opposite, linear, 20 to 60 × 1 to 2 (3) mm, tips acute-rounded, surfaces closely strigose to ascending-hirsutulous, inconspicuously pustulose. Inflorescences cymules solitary or up to 5 in a group, (3)4 to 8(16) cm, much elongated in fruit, proximal-most flowers not touching; bracts absent; pedicels not elongated in fruit, < 0.5 mm. Flowers usually unscented, strictly appressed; calyces persistent at maturity, asymmetric, narrowly ovoid to urceolate, constricted distally, 2 to 3 mm at anthesis, 3 to 4.5(5) mm in fruit, lobes separate to base, linear, separate to base, margins sparsely finely hirsute-ciliate, midribs thickened, tips usually spreading, abaxial surfaces densely covered with recurved, hook-tipped, pustulose hairs, especially along midrib, hairs longer away from inflorescence axis, adaxial surfaces glabrous basally, appressed short-hirsute apically; corollas rotate, tubes 1 to 2 mm, limbs (1)2 to 4(6) mm in diameter; fornices yellow; styles < 50% length of mature nutlets; flower bracts absent. Fruits 1, positioned away from inflorescence axis, lance-ovate, not compressed, symmetric, 1.8 to 2.8 mm, brown to mottled, proximal half globose-swollen, bases narrowly truncate, somewhat pointed, margins rounded, tips long-acuminate, surfaces smooth, shiny, abaxial and adaxial surfaces strongly convex, spi­nal ridges absent; attachment scars centered, edges usually raised, abutted to overlapped entire length, rarely forming tiny areole at base. Sandy, rocky, occasionally serpentine derived soils; slopes or flats of shrub, grasslands, or open woodland communities. Flowering Apr to Jul. 0 to 1200 m. BW, Col, CR, ECas, Lava, Sisk, WV. CA, ID, NV, WA. Native. Cryptantha flaccida is distinguished by having recurved calyx hairs and a single, smooth nutlet with a swollen base and long-acuminate tips. It is similar to C. rostellata (see discussion). (link added by Mary Ann Machi)

Suggested Citation
Calflora: Information on California plants for education, research and conservation, with data contributed by public and private institutions and individuals. [web application]. 2024. Berkeley, California: The Calflora Database [a non-profit organization]. Available: https://www.calflora.org/   (Accessed: 07/16/2024).